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You are a crazy person

Maddened on November 20, 2022.

Autumn continued destroying all that is good and wholesome in my town, preparing the way for knobby Old Man Winter to slither in and strangle us all in our beds. And I continued plotting how I would destroy the silithicine creatures once they reemerged from their flooded grottoes come spring. And I was amassing quite the collection of explosives and incendiaries in preparation, too!

Frost encased the world each morning. The white terror would descend each night upon the earth, suffocating the last remnants of living things in its icy embrace. Come morning, everything from the grass to the crickets to the very cats and dogs would be stiffly frozen in place, only to finally break free from their crystalline prisons once the Sun rose high enough in the sky to vanquish the frost for one more day. But the Sun could never succeed completely: She was a formidable warrior, but the ice and the darkness had the edge. Each day, the Sun’s strength waned a little bit more, her time with us shortened, and each day, the frost grew in strength and harshness. One day next year—June 21 or 22, unless I miss my guess—the Sun’s slow demise would be complete, the day would be zero minutes long, and night—and the all-embracing frost—would entomb the world forever. Following the frost would be the snow, and the snow would not cease, not this time—not until all the water in the atmosphere had fallen. The rivers would freeze. The oceans would freeze. Ultimately the very air would freeze, a final rime of oxygen–nitrogen powder atop hundreds of feet of packed snow.

I was flabbergasted that I was the only man alive who had, using nothing more than simple and direct extrapolation, teased out the ultimate fate of our world from the chaos of climate and weather—and I was equally as flabbergasted as to how any of us could stop the descent, or failing that, survive it for long.

My letters to President Piggy-Man, the United Nations, and a multitude of climate research organizations all went unanswered. “I probably shouldn’t have wasted the Secretary General’s time with all that PÅnon nonsense,” I lamented to myself. “Now everyone thinks I’m a crazy person.”

“You are a crazy person.” A voice snarked inside my head. It was Schnarkey: Bringer of intrusive thoughts in vocal form.

“But my new PhD in applied climatology says otherwise!” I protested. Were these correspondence courses worth nothing?

“Since when do they print degrees on the back of a napkin?” “In pencil?” “I think that’s the front of the napkin.” “Wait wait wait—is that a piece of toilet paper?” One by one they all started in. The chorus of voices tore into me mercilessly. “But how’d he get the pencil not to tear it?” “Maybe his degree in applied pencillography!” They all started snickering.

I tore up my phony degree (it was printed on a paper towel actually) and moved on.

“You are a crazy person.”

“But that’s what makes me the lovable doofus I am!”

“It is?” Becasue sounded skeptical.

“Isn’t it?”


“Then what is it?”

“It’s because you know all about the gnomes, too.”

Once again I had been accused of being a hazard to navigation. I didn’t follow the man’s logic—I mean, I have, once or twice, left an ocean liner where I should not have, and there was that one incident where I accidentally scuttled an oil tanker at the mouth of the Chesapeake, but I had an excuse: I had been on my way to warn President Piggy-Man of an impending invasion of tadpole commandos and that oil tanker had come out of nowhere. There was no time for me to stop for it.

“Has David Pinnfarb been spreading rumors about me!?” I threw back. “Because he’s not a real captain you know—he’s a knib-knob gnome! A nabbling knib-knob gnome of the highest order!”

At the mention of gnomes, the man’s eyes (such as they were) widened to elephantine proportions. He went off on a rant about gnomes—gnomes destroying his brains and kidneys. Gnomes in his underwear. Gnomes in his overwear. Gnomes under here, gnomes under there, gnomes over there, gnomes over here. I brightened—at least now I could relate to the man. Mutual fear and loathing of gnomes had brought Becasue and I together, and perhaps it would help me relate to this strange, unkempt man, too.

But it was not to be. I couldn’t get a word in edgewise, and the gnomely rant eventually segued into something bizarre and pragacular again. Now the man accused me of screwing a pheasant. That was simply too much. I’d heard this sad story many times before. I squawked in protests (trying, of course, not to sound too much like an upset pheasant myself). But he would hear none of it. He was on a roll now. He accused me of screwing a moose. He accused me of schtupping a cow. He started frothing and screaming—now accusing me of putting earwigs in his ears so they could eat his brain and turn it to mush. Accusing me of dropping naked mole-rats into his tent each night so he couldn’t sleep. Accusing me of being the anti-Christ, an anti-pope, and even an antidisestablishmentarianist.

I looked the man square in the eyes: “You are a crazy person.”

He wasn’t taken aback in the least. He just kept babbling, changing track to blame me for being part of a vast conspiracy to tater-tot twelve-year-olds using a chain of pizza parlors as a front organization. It got weirder from there. I smiled patronizingly, dropped a nickel in his change cup, and kept walking.

I was walking down Hegelian Avenue, on my way to city hall to renew my blogging license, when a man accidentally stepped in my way, and I almost bumped into him. Being a highly pusillanimous man myself, quick to anger, and even quicker to accuse my fellow men of the most outlandish underhandedness, I accused the man of getting in my way on purpose—his goal to suppress me from blogging ever again.

The man said something which makes no sense—ah, a man after my own heart, I see—and then muttered something about gnomes. That was my opening.

I told him I knew all about those devious little fiends. They’ve tried to destroy my brain and kidneys. They’ve hidden in my underwear, and my overwear. They’re always under here, or under there, or over there, or even right over here. A glimmer of understanding seemed to pass over the man’s countenance. Perhaps he could relate to me and my plight now? Mutual fear and loathing of gnomes had brought Becasue and I together, and perhaps it would help me relate to this strange, fastidious man, too.

But alas I was wrong. The man kept trying to interrupt me, but I would have none of it. He must know the truth about the gnomes—before it was too late. I couldn’t let up. If I did, even for one moment, the gnomes would come flying out of the interstitial spaces between this and other branes and zip my mouth shut—I would be forever silenced, prevented from letting the world know about the coming onslaught of gnomes and their machine elf conspirators. Something I said made the man start to make noises resembling an angry pheasant. I plowed forward. I realized he may be one of them—a knib-knob gnome of the highest order. To see if I could draw him out, force him to reveal his true identity, I accused him of doing unholy things with moose and cattle. I knew he was the man who put earwigs in my ears. Was he also the man who kept loosing those naked mole-rats in my basement? He was the anti-Christ—and an anti-pope—and probably an antidisestablishmentarianist, too! I held nothing back.

The man looked me square in the eyes: “You are a crazy person.”

But I would hear none of it. I knew he was part of a vast conspiracy to tater-tot twelve-year-olds using a chain of pizza parlors as a front organization, and I wouldn’t let up for one moment. The man smiled patronizingly, dropped something into my coffee cup, and kept walking.

I sang to my computer this morning as I sat down to begin my hebdomadal scrivenings:

I mouse down and down some more,


I mouse down and down some more,


I so enjoy mousing down, and now I could do so set to song. I kept mousing down. The mouse obeyed and the scroll bar flew and flew.

My moose antlers rang. I picked up.

“You are a crazy person,” said the voice on the other end of the line, and then hung up.

To show them what a stable genius I really was, I promptly ate my moose antlers—whole. Then I went back to blogging.